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Website Development & Hosting: DIY vs. MSP

A compelling online presence is crucial for any business, big or small. Yet, understanding how to choose the website development and hosting platform to support your brand and business goals can seem overwhelming. But fear not, it’s easier than you think when you know more about the features provided and questions to ask.

Whether you’re a seasoned business owner looking to expand your brand online or a founder of a start-up seeking to share your passion, choosing the right platform for your business is the first step towards online success. In this article, we will compare your options between website builders (such as Wix, Squarespace, and others) to choosing a managed service provider offering website development and hosting (such as YellowHammer IT, LLC).

web development wireframe showing responsive on multiple devices

DIY Web Development & Hosting

There are several online platforms that provide website-building and hosting services. The DIY means Do it Yourself – so businesses and individuals can create an account to build yourself. These types of sites are generally classified as website building platforms or DIY website builders. Here are a few examples: Wix, Squarespace, Weebly,, GoDaddy, and others.

Pre-built templates: Some DIY sites provide a range of pre-built templates which make it easy to create a professional-looking site. Your site can look like many other sites using the same service.

User-friendly: Some DIY platforms offer a highly intuitive interface, meaning you don’t need any technical skills to build a website.

Limited customization: For example, while Wix offers a variety of templates, the customization options are not as broad or deep as when working with an MSP.

Shared resources: Like other shared hosting platforms, the resources (like bandwidth, storage, etc.) are shared among many websites, which can impact performance during peak times.

SEO limitations: Pre-built platforms can be somewhat restrictive when it comes to advanced SEO strategies.

Hidden-Costs: While the initial launch may be cost-effective, add-on services can drive costs up. Find out more about any hidden fees or charges that you may not expect.

Advertised Benefits: Many sites advertise “unlimited” storage space and bandwidth. But there are other important back-end resources that can be limited such as Apache Processes, CPU, and Memory that will slow your site down or cause it to be suspended if you exceed allocated resources that aren’t advertised as “unlimited” – Be sure to read the Terms of Service to ensure you know what you are getting and paying for.

Limited scalability: These might not be the best option for very large sites or those with high traffic volumes or complex user interactivity.

While DIY website builders can be a good choice for simple needs, just be sure you understand the services they offer and you get what you need. In comparison, an MSP is generally a better option for businesses looking for a high-quality, customized, and scalable website with professional support and services. Let’s explore more…

website development using wireframe

MSP Website Development and Hosting

A Managed Service Provider (MSP) brings several unique advantages to the table when it comes to developing, hosting, and supporting your website:

Enterprise Level Hosting: An MSP should be a Domain Registrar and have a Data Center to host your website. As a best practice, avoid using DIY websites when working with a trusted MSP.

Tailored Solution: MSPs can provide a custom solution tailored to your business needs, including design, functionality, and performance. They aren’t limited to template designs, which means they can bring your unique vision to life in ways that DIY platforms can’t.

Subject Matter Expert: You are the subject matter expert of your business, so all you have to do is provide the vision for your website and let the MSP team build it for you.

Technical Expertise: MSPs have the technical knowledge to handle complex requirements, like custom code or specialized integrations. With an MSP handling your web development and hosting, you can focus on what you do best: running your business. This allows you to save time and resources while still ensuring a high-quality online presence.

Ongoing Support: When you encounter an issue or need updates to your website, having an MSP means you have professional support available. They can troubleshoot problems, provide guidance, and make updates as needed.

Greater Scalability: As your business grows, your website may need to grow with it. MSPs are well-equipped to help your website scale, whether that means adding new features, handling more traffic, or increasing storage.

Advanced SEO: MSPs can implement advanced SEO strategies and performance optimizations, helping your website to rank higher in search engine results and provide a smooth user experience.

Analytics: Your MSP can provide analytics of website performance and user interactions to help you make data-driven decisions.

Security: Security is crucial in today’s digital landscape, and MSPs often offer robust security measures to protect your website from threats. They monitor and maintain the security of your site 24/7, providing peace of mind and protecting your business from potential risks.

website development that is responsive and simple to launch

What Else Should You Know

There is a saying, “You don’t know what you don’t know.” Choosing a website developer and host is a significant decision for any business owner. The goal is to find a web host and developer who can meet your business’s specific needs and help you achieve your online goals.

While DIY website builders can be a good choice for simple needs, while an MSP website development and hosting services is generally a better option for businesses looking for a high-quality, customized, and scalable website with professional support and services.

10 Important Questions

Here are some important questions to ask before making a choice:

  1. What is your experience in web development and hosting? It’s important to understand the developer’s experience, including the number of years they’ve been in business, the industries they’ve served, and the types of websites they’ve built.

  2. Can you provide references or examples of your work? Seeing actual examples of their work and talking to past clients can give you a good idea of the quality of their services.

  3. What is the estimated cost and timeline for the project? Understanding the cost and timeline upfront can help prevent unexpected expenses or delays later on.

  4. What services are included in the cost? Some developers offer comprehensive packages that include design, development, hosting, and maintenance, while others may charge separately for these services.

  5. What platform will you use to build and host the website and if I choose to move my website to another host what will that look like? The platform used can impact the website’s functionality, ease of use, and ability to scale. You should also have a clear plan if you decide to change webhosts and move your website, as some DIY sites only support your design on their site.

  6. What type of support do you provide after the website is live? Ongoing support is crucial for maintaining the website, troubleshooting issues, and making updates.

  7. How will you make my website SEO-friendly? Having a website that is optimized for search engines can help attract more visitors resulting in conversions.

  8. What is your process for backups and data recovery? Regular backups and a solid plan for data recovery in case of a server failure are critical for protecting your website data.

  9. How can you ensure the security of my website? The developer should have robust measures in place to protect your website from threats and attacks.

  10. How will the website’s performance be monitored and reported? Regular monitoring and reporting can help you understand how well your website is performing and where improvements may be needed.

For more on this topic, check out our article
A Guide to Website Development & Hosting for Business Owners

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Final thoughts

DIY website developers and hosts can be a quick solution. They are user-friendly, with numerous pre-built templates that help you get your website running in no time. But they come with limitations — restricted customization, potential performance issues during peak traffic, and less optimal SEO performance. Moreover, they may not scale well with your growing business needs.

On the other hand, Managed Service Providers (MSPs) like YellowHammer IT, LLC, can offer a tailored approach. They can design a website to your exact specifications, provide ongoing technical support, implement advanced SEO strategies to help your website rank better, and host your site on a dedicated server. More importantly, they can help you scale as your business grows.

Building a solid online presence is a journey, and choosing the right partner to support your website development and hosting needs can make all the difference. While DIY website builders have their place, a professional service like YellowHammer IT, LLC, brings to the table the expertise, customization, and dedicated support that your business deserves.

If you’re ready to take your online presence to the next level, consider partnering with us. We handle the technical side, leaving you free to focus on what you do best — running your business. Contact us today to start crafting and hosting a website that truly speaks for your brand. With YellowHamber IT, LLC, your digital success story starts now.